Common Questions
What can you tell me about your field training program?
The Whittier Police Department’s field training program follows the guidelines set forth by POST.  The field training program consists of six initial cycles, each lasting approximately four weeks and each with a different training officer.

What kind of work schedule does the Whittier Police Department maintain?
Our work schedule offers great balance between work and family time by offering a variety of shifts and days off.  All members of a patrol team work the same schedule and have the same days off.  Shift rotation takes place every six months, usually in January and June.
  • Patrol: 3/12.5 hour shifts
  • 6 patrol teams working 3/12.5 hour shifts with one additional 10 hour shift every 28 days (usually on a Thursday). The shifts are as follows:

    1. Mon-Wed 6am-6:30pm
    2. Mon-Wed 6pm-6:30am
    3. Fri-Sun 6am-6:30pm
    4. Fri-Sun 6pm-6:30am
    5. Thurs-Sat 6am-6:30pm
    6. Tue-Sat 2pm-2:30am (Tue/Wed) & 6pm-6:30am (Thurs)

    Inside personnel: 4/10 shifts
    Investigations, Traffic, Administration and other specialized units.

How long is your probationary period?
One year for all new hires.

What kind of medical insurance does the City of Whittier provide and how much does it cost?

The City of Whittier offers both PPO and HMO medical and dental plans.  Vision plan coverage is only offered to the employee.  The cost of your selected plan will be deducted from your paycheck.

How do officers get selected for special teams?
The Whittier Police Department offers a variety of special assignments and teams such as detectives, special enforcement team, bike patrol team, K9, narcotics, traffic and administration.  Most of the positions carry a five-year assignment length.  When an officer who is assigned to a specialized position approaches the five year mark, an announcement is posted and interested personnel submit memorandums of interest.  Oral interviews and a review of the applicant’s employee package are conducted.  The best qualified candidate is recommended to executive staff for approval.

Officers who return to the patrol division after a specialized assignment must work a full year in patrol before being able to apply for other specialized positions.

Some teams are a collateral duty, in addition to an officer’s full time duties.  The entry team, SORT team, terrorism team, training team, and trauma response team, accept new members when positions become available.

How do officers get selected to work Whittier or Santa Fe Springs?
Deployment to Whittier or Santa Fe Springs is determined by staff, department needs, or by a formal request.

What can you tell me about the report writing process?
The Whittier Police Department’s primary method of report writing is by dictation.  Each officer is assigned a digital recorder, a log sheet and a report envelope.  Once reports are dictated and logged, the envelope and tape are submitted to the records bureau at the end of shift.  Records personnel transcribe the reports and save them into the records management system.  You may review your reports at any computer terminal.

If you have not dictated before, it may seem a bit awkward at first.  With a little practice, you will soon realize the many benefits of report dictation.

What is the top-to-bottom sworn command chain at Whittier Police Department?
Chief, two captains, six lieutenants and fourteen sergeants.

Do you have air support?
The Whittier Police Department does not have a dedicated air unit, however under county mutual aid, air support is available for critical incidents.

Do officers have terrorism protective equipment?

Yes.  Each officer is issued a bag containing a gas mask with CBRNE filter, a Tyvek protective suit, gloves, boots, and chemical tape.

Does the Whittier Police Department investigate homicides?
Yes.  The detective bureau investigates all crimes that occur in Whittier and Santa Fe Springs.

Does the Whittier Police Department handle CSI?
Yes.  The Whittier Police Department handles all CSI for incidents that occur in Whittier and Santa Fe Springs.  Our forensic unit recently received a $550,000 grant, which resulted in significant equipment and services upgrade.

Where do you book prisoners and how lengthy is the process?
The Whittier Police Department maintains a jail facility at the station where all arrestees are booked.  The officer’s responsibility during booking is to complete a booking sheet and collect the arrestee’s personal belongings.  Jail staff handles photos, fingerprinting and processing.

Which courthouse is used for Whittier Police Department cases?
The Whittier municipal/superior/traffic courthouse is located next to the Whittier police station.  On some cases, appearance may be necessary at the Norwalk superior court, which is approximately 15 minutes from the station or at the Los Padrinos juvenile hall in Downey.

Do you have a SWAT team?
The Whittier Police Department maintains a 21-member tactical team, which is primarily used for high-risk warrant service.  All team members attend a basic SWAT school and the team once a month.

For situations that call for SWAT and negotiations, the Whittier Police Department uses LA. CO. Special Enforcement Bureau under a mutual aid agreement.

Do you have MDCs in the patrol units?
Yes.  Every unit is equipped with a touch-screen DATA911 MDC system.

Does the Whittier Police Department provide continued training to officers?
Yes.  In addition to range and use of force qualifications six times a year, teams receive a variety of training via POST telecourses and shift training.  As part of the 24-hour POST continued training requirement, officers are sent to off-site law enforcement courses on a regular basis.

Do you have a substation in Santa Fe Springs?
Yes.  The Police Services Center is staffed by both Whittier and Santa Fe Springs personnel and houses the WPD Santa Fe Springs detective bureau, problem oriented policing team, traffic, and records bureau.  The staging facility is also located in Santa Fe Springs and is where officers report for duty.  The staging facility houses all police units, locker rooms, briefing room and sergeant’s office.

Do you have a Baker to Vegas team?
Yes.  The Whittier Police Department regularly participates in the Baker to Vegas relay cup challenge.

Do you have gym at the station?
Yes.  There is also a Gym at the Santa Fe Springs staging facility.

Do you have a tuition reimbursement program?
Yes.  College tuition is reimbursed at up to 75% of Cal State rates and up to $250 per semester for books.  The program is applicable up to and including a Masters degree.  For detailed information and conditions that apply, please contact Human Resources at (562) 567-9830.